Q&A - Riding Bicycles Abreast
I recently ran into a situation where an officer pulled me over for riding two abreast while I was stopped at a red light in a left turn lane waiting to turn onto a bike lane. Myself and the two other individuals on bicycles were riding single file. As we approached the intersection we indicated a left turn and moved into the left turn lane when it was clear/safe to do so. As we came to a stop to wait for the red light the three of us compressed and two of us could be considered side by side as we waited for the light. The rear video on my bicycle shows an officer on a motorcycle comes into view while we are stopped (i.e., there were no cars behind us in the turn lane, nor did the officer see that we were riding single file as we approached the stop light).
Is it illegal to temporarily stop beside another cyclist while waiting for a red light before preceding to ride single file through the intersection to the bike lane?
I tried reviewing the BC traffic act to get an answer, but this specific situation is not covered. Riders can be temporarily side by side as they pass one another which could apply to the situation of being stopped at a red or stopping two abreast may not constitute riding two abreast. Alternatively, being stopped beside someone on a bike may or may not constitute riding two abreast depending on the interpretation of the courts in a given situation.